The Luxury Of No Agenda

Looking thru a few things I made with Alicia Jo a few weeks ago another Luxury of personal work occurred to me. Quite literally when you have no agenda, no plan, and no preconceived plans. To some degree that's true on many occasions I make photographs for this project. In other ways not so much because I have something in mind as to what I'm doing and why even if it's only an experiment or variation in approach.

I wrote previously about having no agenda at all when Alicia Jo and I made a few pictures on morning before I caught the train home in terms of making pictures for a project I was already done with. In that case I used the same setup and approach and pretty much everything else with two exceptions. I chucked in one tiny change in the form of a prop — Playboy bunny ears. The other thing I did was use an extreme post processing treatment just to see what it looked like.

It's a very long and boring story but after making that set of pictures mostly for Alicia Jo the same way I'e done all the Fragments side project I had no time left. Well not enough to do anything that's been on my mind to play with for this project. In other words nothing on my agenda. Instead we made a few pictures free-form. "Hey, what do you feel like playing with?" Answer: The crop and those crazy heavy cuffs (actually she ended up keeping the cuffs — I'm a push-over when it comes to that stuff).

Turns out having no agenda I made a few pictures somewhat in the context of this project I've not made before. Something akin to strait-up portraits against white. Sure I've used that blank white wall at the back of the studio before on some of the stuff I've done. I've used it for more abstract figure, gesture, and body language studies. I've used it as the back drop for getting ready out-takes for the chastity project. I've never done strait-up, stand here, strait-up portraiture with it anywhere close to this context.

I know that's doesn't seem like some sort of revelation but in a way it is. Why have I not done more strait-up portraits? Just a couple of quick pictures that take a few minutes at max? Simple; I've never had that on my agenda so it just hasn't happened.

There's something I like about these a lot. I don't know if or even how they fit into what I'm doing with the Black/White project at all. So what, this takes absolutely no time compared to many of the other things I have in mind or have experimented with in terms of approach. I like the way the look, why not blow a couple of frames in five or maybe ten minutes if I get chatty and make a series of these too? Maybe they don't fit, maybe they fit something else.

The moral to the story is that maybe it's good on occasion to have absolutely no agenda. Harder to do than you might thing, at least it is for me. In a lot of ways maybe having a looser agenda can open up possibilities as well.

End Notes

All photos made with the Fuji XT-1 and 18-55mm XF @35mm. Processing via Lightroom CC with VSCO FILM07 TRI-X320.